WHAT IS THE LAW OF THE LAND? — PART 4

Paul the Apostle, by Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn c. 1657
Paul the Apostle, by Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn c. 1657 (from here)

In the first post of this series, we took up the task of Defining The Law Of The Land. After that, we considered The Purpose Of The Law Of The Land. The last post focused upon the effect of what we believe. How do we achieve a consensus? What should be The Law Of The Land? That post considered The Means of Persuasion — Ethos, Pathos, and Logos.

Here we will look at our leadership, but first a diversion.

Fun On A Saturday Afternoon

On Saturday afternoon, I attended Delegate Bob Marshall‘s Campaign Kick-Up” Event (Virginians will vote on November 3, 2015.). It was fun, good food, dancing, and politics.  Got to watch Delegate Marshall dance with his lady, Cathy, and Senator Dick Black dance with his lady, Barbara. That obviously made the ladys happy. Now my wife is after me to dance. Oh well….

I was there for the food and the politics. In addition to Delegate Marshall, Congressman Rob Wittman, Senator Black, Supervisor Jeanine Lawson, and Willie Deutsch (candidate for Member School Board – COLES DISTRICT) spoke. Clerk of the Court Michele B. McQuigg also attended. McQuigg surprised Marshall a bit when she declined to speak, but she did had little reason to do so. Wittman and Marshall both spoke glowingly of her, and she obviously supports Marshall. And there were plenty of good speeches.

Strangely, however, what I found most memorable was a speech not given by a politician. Instead, the fellow giving the invocation made the most powerful statement, and his quotes of Charles Finney and Noah Webster formed the core of his speech. I then decided quotations from those two gentleman would form the core of this post.

Why Must We Choose A New Leadership?

Many wise and learned men have written about the problem of finding good leadership for a republic. That includes why we must be careful.

In 1838, Abraham Lincoln gave this address, The Perpetuation of Our Political Institutions: Address Before the Young Men’s Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois (January 27, 1838). Here is an excerpt.

It is to deny, what the history of the world tells us is true, to suppose that men of ambition and talents will not continue to spring up amongst us. And, when they do, they will as naturally seek the gratification of their ruling passion, as others have so done before them. The question then, is, can that gratification be found in supporting and maintaining an edifice that has been erected by others? Most certainly it cannot. Many great and good men sufficiently qualified for any task they should undertake, may ever be found, whose ambition would inspire to nothing beyond a seat in Congress, a gubernatorial or a presidential chair; but such belong not to the family of the lion, or the tribe of the eagle. What! think you these places would satisfy an Alexander, a Caesar, or a Napoleon?–Never! Towering genius disdains a beaten path. It seeks regions hitherto unexplored.–It sees no distinction in adding story to story, upon the monuments of fame, erected to the memory of others. It denies that it is glory enough to serve under any chief. It scorns to tread in the footsteps of any predecessor, however illustrious. It thirsts and burns for distinction; and, if possible, it will have it, whether at the expense of emancipating slaves, or enslaving freemen. Is it unreasonable then to expect, that some man possessed of the loftiest genius, coupled with ambition sufficient to push it to its utmost stretch, will at some time, spring up among us? And when such a one does, it will require the people to be united with each other, attached to the government and laws, and generally intelligent, to successfully frustrate his designs. (from here)

Note that Lincoln speaks of only the chief leader. He predicted that some leaders would be controlled with only the greatest difficulty, and we now have a leader who speaks brazenly of the power of his phone and his pen. Yet what is our real problem? Is President Barack Obama a man possessed of the loftiest genius, or is it that at every level of public office we have elected unscrupulous men and women? Thus, when our president does not fulfill the obligations of his office — when he violates his oath and breaks The Law Of The Land — he finds support. Therefore, we cannot stop him. We cannot even slow him down. And so our leader, the leader of the world’s most powerful nation, has set the whole world in turmoil, and we can only watch the unraveling.

fatter_disaster

What have we failed to do?

Some call Charles Finney the Father of American revivalism. Whether he was such or not, Finney spoke at a time preachers were willing to speak of politics.

The church must take right ground in regard to politics. Do not suppose, now, that I am going to preach a political sermon, or that I wish to have you join and get up a Christian party in politics. No, I do not believe in that. But the time has come that Christians must vote for honest men, and take consistent ground in politics, or the Lord will curse them. They must be honest men themselves, and instead of voting for a man because he belongs to their party, Bank or Anti-Bank, Jackson, or Anti-Jackson, they must find out whether he is honest and upright, and fit to be trusted. They must let the world see that the church will uphold no man in office, who is known to be a knave, or an adulterer, or a Sabbath-breaker, or a gambler. Such is the spread of intelligence and the facility of communication in our country, that every man can know for whom he gives his vote. And if he will give his vote only for honest men, the country will be obliged to have upright rulers. . . . As on the subject of slavery and temperance, so on this subject, the church must act right or the country will be ruined. God cannot sustain this free and blessed country, which we love and pray for, unless the church will take right ground. Politics are a part of religion in such a country as this, and Christians must do their duty to the country as a part of their duty to God. It seems sometimes as if the foundations of the nation were becoming rotten, and Christians seem to act as if they thought God did not see what they do in politics. But I tell you, he does see it, and he will bless or curse this nation, according to the course they take. (from here)

Was Finney right? Is politics part of the religion in a country such as this? All I know is that who we vote for reflects a moral choice. When fail to vote for the welfare of our family, friends, neighbors, and countrymen — when we vote selfishly — God cannot sustain us as a free and blessed country.

Noah Webster is famous as a lexicographer for his commitment to education. He stated our obligation as voters this way.

When you become entitled to exercise the right of voting for public officers, let it be impressed on your mind that God commands you to choose for rulers, “just men who will rule in the fear of God.” The preservation of government depends on the faithful discharge of this duty; if the citizens neglect their duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made, not for the public good so much as for selfish or local purposes; corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute the laws; the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men; and the rights of the citizens will be violated or disregarded. If a republican government fails to secure public prosperity and happiness, it must be because the citizens neglect the divine commands, and elect bad men to make and administer the laws. (from here)

So what should we do? How should we select good leaders? Fortunately for us, the Bible offers us some good advice. A couple of thousand years ago, here is what the Apostle Paul told a young protegé about selecting leaders for the church in Ephesus, which was then a corrupt city.

1 Timothy 3:1-7 Good News Translation (GNT)

Leaders in the Church

This is a true saying: If a man is eager to be a church leader, he desires an excellent work. A church leader must be without fault; he must have only one wife, be sober, self-controlled, and orderly; he must welcome strangers in his home; he must be able to teach; he must not be a drunkard or a violent man, but gentle and peaceful; he must not love money; he must be able to manage his own family well and make his children obey him with all respect. For if a man does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of the church of God? He must be mature in the faith, so that he will not swell up with pride and be condemned, as the Devil was. He should be a man who is respected by the people outside the church, so that he will not be disgraced and fall into the Devil’s trap.

We tend to overlook Paul’s advice and think only of church leaders. Yet our nation’s borders envelope thousands of churches. Our political leaders ensure the morality of our laws. Like it or not, our leaders impose their values upon society. When our leaders are immoral, they endanger our own values and the values of our family, friends and country.

We also may think of Paul’s advice as quaint, not appropriate for today.  For example, when Paul wrote this passage, he wrote to people who would not have seriously considered women as leaders. Paul, however, appointed women to positions of trust, and he readily accepted their help. As 1 Corinthians 9 explains, Paul adapted to the culture of each people he visited. He wanted people to listen to when he preach the Gospel, not argue over side issues.

1 Corinthians 9:22-23 Good News Translation (GNT)

22 Among the weak in faith I become weak like one of them, in order to win them. So I become all things to all people, that I may save some of them by whatever means are possible.

23 All this I do for the gospel’s sake, in order to share in its blessings.

Thanks to a couple of thousand years of such patient Christian teaching, in this country we no longer allow men to select themselves to lead by using the point of their swords. Instead, we vote. Hence, each Christian now has an obligation to demonstrate how a Christian should participate in politics. When we support our candidates, and when we vote, we can put Paul’s words to action. We can back the candidate we would most like to have in charge of our church. If he (or she) is not fit for that job, he probably won’t do a good job as a leader of our county, our city, our state or our country.

Character does matter.

JESUS NEVER GAVE THEM WHAT THEY WANTED — PART 5B

John of Patmos watches the descent of the New Jerusalem from God in a 14th century tapestry.
John of Patmos watches the descent of the New Jerusalem from God in a 14th century tapestry (from here).

This is the sixth and the final post in a series of posts that proposes to answer the following question.

Can you name a single thing Jesus said which was genuinely new, original, or useful?

We had The Presentation Of The Question in part 1. If you wish to understand why we are considering this question and how we intend to answer it, please visit part 1.

With respect to the question above, here we will examine the following.

Why Is The Result Important?

Of Sinners Made To Do Good Works

Of Heaven And Hell

Some people don’t believe in Satan. Others have no trouble believing in Satan. About a decade ago, I have moved into the later camp. Nevertheless, I do not see Satan’s fallen angels behind every evil. As Jesus once observed, we are weak. Even when He most needed comfort, that lonely night before the beginning of His ordeal, His disciples would not wait with Him.

Matthew 26:39-41 English Standard Version (ESV)

39 And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” 40 And he came to the disciples and found them sleeping. And he said to Peter, “So, could you not watch with me one hour? 41 Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

Because we are incapable of being holy and doing what is right on our own, Jesus died on a cross for us. Drinking from the cup meant for us, he paid our debt for our sins.

If we choose to accept the grace Jesus offers us, we have only an inkling of what it means. Except to make it clear that heaven is wonderful and hell is awful, the Bible says relatively little about either heaven or hell. We just get hints of what is to come. In 1 Corinthians 15, for example, the Apostle argues that the resurrection of the dead is real, that we will receive  new, imperishable bodies. In Revelation 21, we get a glimpse of the new heaven and the new earth. In verse 8, Revelation 21 also speaks of the second death, eternal separation from God, but what does that mean?

Jesus, in one of His parables, The Rich Man and Lazarus, offered a clue.

Luke 16:19-31 English Standard Version (ESV)

19 “There was a rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. 20 And at his gate was laid a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, 21 who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover, even the dogs came and licked his sores. 22 The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried, 23 and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus at his side. 24 And he called out,‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame.’ 25 But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner bad things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.’ 27 And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house— 28 for I have five brothers—so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’29 But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’30 And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ 31 He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’”

What did this Lazarus do to earn salvation? What acts of charity did he perform? Jesus does not tell us. What are are given to know is that the rich man had no charity in his heart. He did not hear Moses and the Prophets. When given the opportunity, he gave nothing of himself for the love of his fellow man.

The Christian Life Includes Full Participation

How should each of us live out the Christian life? Since each of us is different, I think that is for each of us to say. What the Bible does make clear is that each of us must give life to our faith through good works.

James 2:14-17 English Standard Version (ESV)

14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

We usually think of good works as acts of charity, sharing our wealth with the poor. However, there is more to it than that. We are called upon to put on The Whole Armor of God, resist evil, and do good.

Christians Must Support Good Government

Much of the Old Testament is about government.  Consider how Jesus referred to the Old Testament.

Matthew 5:17-18 English Standard Version (ESV)

17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished.

In fact, some call the first five books of the Hebrew Bible the Mosaic Code or the Law of Moses. What was the purpose of the Mosaic Law? (www.gotquestions.org) provides an explanation as to why God gave the Mosaic Code to the Hebrews that includes these two statements.

(1) Reveal the holy character of the eternal God to the nation of Israel (Leviticus 19:2;20:7–8).

(2) Set apart the nation of Israel as distinct from all the other nations (Exodus 19:5).

To set aside Israel as a nation, God provided the people of Israel their own legal system, showing that He understands that how we choose to govern ourselves matters.

Think about that rich man (Luke 16:19-31 above) who refused to offer any charity to Lazarus. Instead, the rich man relied upon his wealth for salvation, and finding himself in hell, he looked for an excuse:

Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.”  

With this request he implied he would have reformed if only he had been properly warned. Abraham made it clear he had been warned, but he ignored Moses and the Prophets. Instead, even as he spoke to Abraham, that rich man set himself above Lazarus, and we still try set ourselves above the poor and the downtrodden today.

When your new boobs destroy your marriage…REALLY??? illustrates the absurd importance we place upon our possessions. Here culturemonk also delves into the difficulty of long term relationships, but what precipitated the problem? It seems the lady’s boob job went from her chest to her head.

As Scientists Are Beginning to Figure Out Why Conservatives Are…Conservative (www.motherjones.com), we still look for esoteric excuses to believe we are more special than others, that we are smarter and more deserving. That is, we look for any excuse we can to treat other people as undeserving objects. Yet the Bible teaches we must love one another as we love ourselves. Instead of setting others apart, we must learn how to empathize with each others problems and joys.

Empathy requires us to work with and relate with our neighbors personally. Hence God did not want to give Israel a king (1 Samuel 8). God did not want Israel to hand their problems over to a king; He wanted the Israelites to obey Him and help each other. Instead, the Israelites forgot God, and everyone did what was right in his own eyes (Judges 21:25).

What is the problem with a king? What is the problem with a tyrant? Why should Christians oppose monarchy, tyranny, and any form of government that permits overreaching by bureaucrats? When government becomes too powerful, our leaders begin to block The Way (christianity.stackexchange.com).

  • Instead of allowing parents to teach their children Christianity, government bureaucrats interfere by indoctrinating children in state-approved ideologies and “isms”.
  • Instead of allowing individuals to share the products of their labor, government bureaucrats will redistribute the wealth. Since this is effectively stealing, such a perversion of government impoverishes people. Then our struggles in this life can become so difficult we think of the next only because death becomes more commonplace.
  • Instead of allowing individuals to exercise the right to follow the dictates of their conscience, government seeks to define all our choices.  Sometimes the government will try to force us to do things we know to be wrong.
  • In a free society, the Law proscribes certain activities because when we perform those activities we interfere with each other rights. In a tyrannical society, the Law says what we are allowed to do. When we need to do something, we have to get permission, and so in tyrannical societies people wait and wait, and wait….. In tyrannical societies, instead of doing good works, the People wait.

Jesus does not call us to wait. Jesus saved us, but He saved us for a purpose.

Ephesians 2:1-10 English Standard Version (ESV)

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

He is risen! Happy Easter!

CHOOSING THE FIELD OF BATTLE

school.pngRecently, The American Post-Standard provided one of the posts on this blog, “The Morality of Government,” the courtesy of a link.  In We Must Fight the Devil with Firephadde2 recalls how I answered a question with a question.

In the comment section of Citizen Tom’s piece, “The Morality of Government” I asked him, or any who would answer, ‘How can we operate in a world with these people? Those who preach tolerance but lack tolerance, how do we operate a government in our own nation with those who basically say, “I see your facts, but I simply do not care!’

Tom answered:

There is a deeper question. What can we do to help such people? Think about the irony. When Nicholas attacks others because they do not believe what he believes, he becomes the very monster he claims to condemn. Is not a bigot someone who refuses to see the truth? (from here)

What is the issue that raised these questions? The issue is multiculturalism.  In IS MULTICULTURALISM A RELIGION?, we considered educational problem posed by multiculturalism. In this post, I will reemphasize this problem with more examples. Then I will once again sound the call for school choice.

ColorStorm is a new Christian blog that I very much enjoy. Here of late some atheists have visited the blog. Their object is to ridicule the Christian faith. Since I enjoy debate, I have used their visits to point out the inconsistencies in the Atheist faith. To illustrate the educational deficit of some of these atheists, I have included some of their comments and my replies. Of course, ColorStorm, the blog’s author, and other commenters such as Wally Fry also provided noteworthy responses, but mine pertain to the points I wish to make here.

What are the points I wish to make:

  • I am in my sixties, and I am still trying to undo the damage I have received from our education system. The founders received a classical education. That included sound instruction on the Bible as well as the history and the literature of Western Civilization. We no longer provide that to our children, and because we never had such an education ourselves we don’t know what they are missing.
  • The atheists commenters are not stupid. They are ignorant.
  • If we want to save our children’s souls, we must take responsibility for educating them.

For the complete comment trails, please visit Can’t go into detail… and  Here’s a toast to you. What I have provide below are teasers. Please visit the posts.

Example 1: from  Can’t go into detail…

Can’t go into detail… used the Creation story to point out the foolishness of saying no to God. In response to some carping from Atheist commenters, I wrote this.

Citizen TomJanuary 1, 2015 at 1:30 am

What I use to have problem with was the fact God punished all mankind, not just Adam and Eve. I could not understand such a thing. It did not seem fair, but as I grew older, and I finally read the Bible, I realized that the Bible describes as we are. It was the first book to do so.

In my years as a scientist and engineer, I have learned we have a way of fooling ourselves. We think we understand things, but we don’t. When we think we do understand thing, we just betray a serious lack of wisdom.

What scientists do is create models they call theories. These models exist to portray cause and effect relationships. The better the models predict what happens in the “real world” the better the theory works. Nevertheless, it is foolhardy to say we “understand” much of anything. For example, without understanding them at all, we model the effect of gravitational forces on masses. Thus, we can predict the course of a spaceship, but we have no real explanation as to why objects are attracted to each other. We just have more and more questions.

What the Bible does is provide us a model of our character. The Bible predicts how we behave, and it provides us a method for improving our behavior. We may not understand how those “superstitious, scientifically-ignorant Bronze Age men” ever came up with such a book, but we have not been able to improve upon the wisdom they passed onto us in the Bible. With a book inspired by God, those “superstitious, scientifically-ignorant Bronze Age men” changed our world. So it is I finally accept the Bible as the Truth. The Bible may be difficult to understand and accept, but unless we accept the Bible as true — as our Creator’s handiwork — there is so much more that makes no sense.

Example 2: from Here’s a toast to you.

Here I let Arkenaten, one of the atheist bloggers, introduce the topic, what is proof?

ArkenatenJanuary 3, 2015 at 11:17 am

Proofs are generally the preserve of mathematicians.

I asked for verifiable evidence that the biblical character, Jesus of Nazareth is the creator god you genuflect to, that’s all.

What has pride got to do with anything?

ArkenatenJanuary 3, 2015 at 11:19 am

Sorry, my comment was chopped short.

Where is this verifiable evidence you say I have? Please can you identify it.

Thanks.

Citizen TomJanuary 3, 2015 at 2:46 pm

Proofs are generally the preserve of mathematicians.

That statement is a good indication of how badly we have educated our young for decades. Mathematics is just a modelling tool that uses simple abstractions to model what we see in the “real world.” Mathematical proofs just prove that a mathematical model is consistent with the abstract assumptions upon which it is based. What such proofs prove is that an abstract concept is “true.” Only in the abstract doe 2 + 2 = 4 (http://citizentom.com/2008/06/22/what-is-mathematical-proof-does-2-2-4/)

Scientists use mathematics to model the “real world.” What scientists do is create models they call theories. These models exist to portray cause and effect relationships. The better the models predict what happens in the “real world” the better the theory works. Nevertheless, it is foolhardy to say we “understand” much of anything. For example, without understanding them at all, we model the effect of gravitational forces on masses. Thus, we can predict the course of a spaceship, but we have no real explanation as to why objects are attracted to each other. We just have more and more questions.

What is the limitation? Mathematical abstractions are imaginary. Consider. If I say a line is defined by two points, what does that mean. Do perfectly straight, infinite lines exist in nature? Do indivisible points? Then what makes any proof in mathematics superior to this observation?

Romans 1:18-23 New King James Version (NKJV)

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

We live in an age when like no others before us we can see and hear the glory of God’s creation. With telescopes we can see into the heavens. With microscopes we can delve into the substance of things, and still we are not filled with the wonder of the One who made it all. Instead, we puff ourselves up with our puny accomplishments and the degree of our understanding. When we should be awed by what is self-evident, set in splendor right in front of us, we demand proof of the existence a Being far beyond any conception of our finite imaginations. When we obviously could not understand the explanation, we still posses the lunatic temerity to demand that God explain Himself. Why? The answer is pride.

Anyway, on my blog, I provide my own reasons for believing in the salvation offered by Jesus Christ. Here are some of my favorites.

  1. Without the inspiration of God, men would not have written the Bible. No other book is like it. The Bible doesn’t flatter us; the Bible holds up a mirror and shows us as we are. The Bible also gives us hope; it explains how God redeemed us from sin. There are about 40 authors, and these tell a coherent story in a book whose writings span 1500 hundred years. Moreover, in spite of the violence and travails of human history, believers have preserved the Bible virtually unchanged for thousands of years. Again I ask, what other book is like that?
  2. Without the God of Israel, the history of the Jews makes no sense. After all that has been done to destroy them, after all they have suffered, the Jews still exist as a nation. No other people has a story so strange and remarkable, not even close.
  3. Without Christ Jesus — without the man who was also the Son of God — the formation of Christianity makes no sense. After His crucifixion, hundreds saw Him — alive. Rather than deny Christ, many accepted death. That includes all but one of His apostles. Only John died of old age. Why? What for? These people had nothing material to gain. In court the testimony of a dying man holds great weight? What is the testimony of a Christian martyr? Is it not the testimony of someone who knows his death, lies just before him?
  4. Christianity makes a difference. As a way of life, loving God and ones neighbors cannot be beat. That’s why 2000 years after the birth of Christ men and women still speak of being born again. Each Christian knows that when they were born again, that birth was real and substantial, not a delusion.

Is  an idiot? No. I suspect he is intelligent, but he is mixed up about mathematics and science. I could list endlessly all the otherwise inexplicable things Christianity explains, and he would continue to deride my “proofs.” Yet there is no perfect proof. Mathematics doesn’t provide such proofs. Science does not provide such proofs. We explain things as best can. Then we must rely upon faith.

Example 3: from Here’s a toast to you.

archaeopteryx1 replied to my comment above. In his reply, he admitted more than he realized.

archaeopteryx1January 3, 2015 at 3:18 pm

With telescopes we can see into the heavens. With microscopes we can delve into the substance of things, and still we are not filled with the wonder of the One who made it all.” – That could well be because when viewed as a magical creation by prestidigitator Yahweh, it’s really rather “Ho-Hum” – I mean, if his billing on the marquee is that he could do ANYthing, why should we be surprised? But to know that it all arose naturally, now THAT’s amazing!

Citizen TomJanuary 3, 2015 at 3:47 pm

archaeopteryx1

It occurs to me that you don’t realize the significance of what you said.

– That could well be because when viewed as a magical creation by prestidigitator Yahweh, it’s really rather “Ho-Hum” – I mean, if his billing on the marquee is that he could do ANYthing, why should we be surprised? But to know that it all arose naturally, now THAT’s amazing!

If it is more amazing (or difficult) to believe that creation just happened “naturally” than it is to be believe God created the universe, then why would you believe that creation just happened naturally? Do you now do you get the point of Romans 1:18-23?

archaeopteryx1January 3, 2015 at 4:06 pm

If it is more amazing (or difficult) to believe that creation just happened ‘naturally’ than it is to be believe God created the universe, then why would you believe that creation just happened naturally?” – What a bizarre question! M. C. Escher etchings constantly amaze me, which, by your logic, means I should stop viewing them and instead concentrate on the works of someone more predictable, say Grandma Moses. With a thinking process like that, it becomes easier to see why you’re unable to come up with the verifiable evidence you promised.

Think about the sheer absurdity. To cover up an illogical assertion, would  have us believe he denies the existence of God for the sake of art appreciation?

Conclusion

What is most precious to us? Our children, right? Trusting politicians to educate our children is dumb. When we don’t trust politicians, why do we trust them to educate our children? For the sake of the children????? It is a good for our children to put them in the care of people we don’t trust?

We can make all kinds of excuses, but the facts are indisputable.

  • We don’t trust politicians.
  • Government wastes lots of money. Private schools cost less and do at least just as good a job.
  • Homeschoolers, without the benefit of government educators, perform at least as well as publicly schooled children.
  • Government-run schools deprive parents of their right to choose who educates their children, how their children are educated, what their children learn, and where their children are educated.
  • Government-run schools teach all kinds of isms. That includes multiculturalism, environmentalism, secularism, socialism, moral relativism….

Are all teachers bad? Are all school board members unscrupulous? No and no, but government-run schools do not respond to parents. Politicians pay the bills.

We have created a political system that no longer looks very much like what the founders created. Instead of electing people to protect our rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, we sell our votes to politicians for promises, promises they hardly ever keep. Instead, when they don’t do as they promise, they find somebody else to blame. Of course, it is a scam, and we know it. So why don’t we do something?

What is the biggest cost of bad government? Our children receive a bad education, and the worst part of it is how little they learn about the Bible and their Creator. If we want to our children to receive a decent education — for the sake of their souls — we must allow (and insist that) parents take responsibility for the education of their own children. For the sake of our children, we must fight for school choice.

HAVE YOU BEEN DISTRACTED FROM THE ISSUES THAT MATTER?

newsThink about how odd it is. We elected a black president, and he promised to bring us all together. With his election, we would finally see an end to racism. Instead, the people who were supposed to end racism won’t let it die.

Here is how it has been going down.

  • Some white guy kills some black guy. In the last couple of big news stories, the supposedly killer white guys have been policemen.
  • The news media screams the supposedly murderous killing is about RACISM.
  • This president and his justice department do their absolute best to prove it is about RACISM.
  • Then the evidence slowly trickles out through the alternative news media (See 11 Facts About the Eric Garner Case the Media Won’t Tell You, for example.), and we find out it is just about self defense.
  • The news media moves on to the next racial expose.

So why is the corporate news media doing this? Why is the Obama administration helping to make national stories out what should be local stories? Why make so much effort to stir up racial animus?

Consider how a magician does his tricks.

Magicians use distraction techniques to draw the audience’s attention away from whichever hand is engaged in sleight of hand. Magicians can accomplish this by encouraging the audience to look elsewhere or by having an assistant do or say something to draw the audience’s attention away. (from here)

The same technique is used in warfare. Here is an example appropriate to the anniversary of our entry into World War II.

Operation Fortitude was the code name for a World War II military deception employed by the Allied nations as part of an overall deception strategy (code named Bodyguard) during the build-up to the 1944 Normandy landings. Fortitude was divided into two sub-plans, North and South, with the aim of misleading the German high command as to the location of the imminent invasion.

Both Fortitude plans involved the creation of fake field armies (based in Edinburgh and the south of England) which threatened Norway(Fortitude North) and Pas de Calais (Fortitude South). The operation was intended to divert Axis attention away from Normandy and, after the invasion on June 6, 1944, to delay reinforcement by convincing the Germans that the landings were purely a diversionary attack. (continued here)

Are we at war with our government? Are our leaders trying to deceive us?  If so, what we being distracted from? What are the stories we should be giving our attention?

Here are some examples.

Perhaps, instead worrying about policemen killing people when they violently resist arrest, we need to worry about our tax and spend crazy leaders. What are they doing to our country, and why are we letting them do it?

  • We had an economy that no one could surpass. We use to make things. Now we buy our computers from an authoritarian regime that clearly considers us a threat to its interest in conquest.
  • We use to assimilate new immigrants by insisting they become Americans. When immigrants came here, we expected them to work and learn English. Now we give them welfare and educate their children in their native tongue.
  • We use to have a president who honorably enforced the law, whether he liked that law or not. Now our president vetoes existing laws, and he calls that prosecutorial discretion.
  • When we did something stupid and made a situation worse — when we passed a law like Obamacare because people lied to us — we used to have the sense to repeal that bad law. Now we try to cover over the lies of the liars by “fixing” that bad law and pretend it just has a few flaws.

Why is it we act as if politicians always are right? Is the appropriate response to every government failure more government? If we are foolish enough to think such a thing, maybe we need to look at who educated us. Don’t politicians run our schools? Even though Opposition to Common Core spurs jump in homeschooling (www.foxnews.com), doesn’t the Federal Government want still more control?

Where does the Constitution give the Federal Government any authority over our education system? It is not there? Hummmm. Then why is the Federal Government taking more and more control over what we learn?

When we get lost, are we suppose to continue stumbling down the same unknown trail, or are we suppose to retrace our steps? Doesn’t it make sense to get back to a point where we knew our location? That’s the essence of Conservatism. When something doesn’t work, before we attempt to make any more improvements, we go back to what we know works.

 Addendum

Just in case you think our leaders don’t act when we are distracted, check out these stories.

Unfortunately, the Obama administration is not done yet. So when we are enjoying good meals with family and friends on Christmas and New Year, we can count on those meals costing us more than we know.